There is this notorious old lady in town that everybody warns you about, and I finally ran across her today. She’s in her late 70s, I’d say, beautifully dressed, with impeccable makeup and great hair. She haunts family-type restaurants (the ones with “kids eat free” nights, high chairs, and large children’s menus) and approaches moms to tell them something nasty about their kids. We have several child-free restaurants in town but this old broad prefers to drive herself nuts by seeking out kids. 

She prefers to bug women with several kids or women who are out with kids alone. Things she says to them range from “Your son seems retarded. Have you considered having him evaluated?” and “Your kids spoiled my whole evening. These are the rudest, nastiest children in town.” Moms, of course, feel horrible even if they know who she is in advance.

So today we were at Applebee’s, and the town’s baby-hater sat right behind us. It was a super early dinner and the place was almost entirely empty. There was zero reason for her to sit behind the only toddler in the joint. Klara was enjoying herself so much that only a total monster would resist smiling. She wasn’t exceptionally loud or anything. But she’s a toddler who was having a grand old time, so there was running around and happy giggling. 

The baby-hater started giving me dirty looks and rolling her eyes. I was hoping she’d try to say something because boy, did I have a few choice words prepared just for her. But here’s the advantage of being an older mother. Nobody messes with me. So the old hag never dared to say anything.

I understand this is a mentally ill person. But hey, she’s managing to put on eyeliner and mascara every day. She should be capable to control her verbal diarrhea.

A Good Example

Ukraine is celebrating the Day of the Armed Forces today. The war is going on and the past couple of months haven’t been good. 

During the festivities in Kiev, a man raised his arm in a Nazi salute and yelled “Ukraine above all!” He was immediately arrested. Nobody anticipates the President to give a speech explaining how this was a good guy. To the contrary, everybody knows he’ll give a talk to condemn this kind of thing in the strongest terms. The media on all sides of the political spectrum expressed horror and condemnation that this happened. 

And it was just one fellow at a huge event. 


The two morning posts were inspired by the idiots who insist that those who aren’t in Catalonia shouldn’t have opinions about the situation. And whose entire position on the subject is the superficial and consumerist “If people want to have a country of their own, they should be free to choose that.” Of course, when I asked for the directions of the store where you could make that purchase, they got all huffy. 

Neither idiot is in or from Catalonia, by the way. 


The very idea that you can copyright certain subjects of discussion or artistic expression is deeply neoliberal. The belief that you can “appropriate” experience stems from seeing everything as property and wanting to appoint owners who’ll limit access to it. 

It’s curious how many concepts that are considered to be super-duper progressive – choice, cultural appropriation, intersectionality, identity – are profoundly neoliberal. The progressive dogma that the desiring individual can never be questioned or scrutinized, what is it but the glorification of consumerism?


The argument that “you don’t live here, so you don’t understand the situation and don’t get to opine” is quite outlandish in the 21st century. Everybody is exposed to the same information flows, and being immersed in a situation often makes it harder, not easier, to understand it.